27 Dec 2017

Police urges public to 'please slow down' as road toll rises

8:44 am on 27 December 2017

Police are pleading with the public to slow down on roads with the holiday road toll now at seven, just four days after the Christmas break started.

The fatalities have been spread across the country, the most recent being two people in a head on collision yesterday morning in South Canterbury.

Mid-south Canterbury area commander Dave Gaskin, who was called out to the Boxing Day crash near Glenavy, says he doesn't want the toll to climb any higher.

"Please slow down, that's probably the best idea," he said.

"Everyone wants to have a really good long holiday, what we want is for them to get on holiday, enjoy themselves and then to come home and spend the rest of their lives with their loved ones."

Mr Gaskin said even when a collision doesn't end in a fatality, it still leaves a significant impact on people.

He said many of these crashes are preventable and he's urging people to stop being careless on the road.

Abdul Raheem Fahad Syed, 29, who was hit by a man accused of driving while drunk, and running a red light in Auckland Central, was the first fatality to be counted.

The scene of the crash on Symonds Street.

The scene of the crash on Symonds Street. Photo: www.snpa.co.nz

A 20-year-old has been charged for the crash and appeared in court yesterday.

Over the weekend, three additional people were killed in single car crashes.

Sixty-four-year-old Fijian National Lalita Devi was killed in a single-car crash in Northland on Saturday.

On Sunday, one person died and another was seriously injured after hitting a tree in Hanmer Springs.

Later that day one person was killed after a van rolled down a bank in Central Hawke's Bay.

A fifth person died and another three were seriously injured, after a three-car collision on State Highway Five near Rotorua on Christmas Eve.

One person also died from a motorcycle crash in Buller, however this is not counted under the official road toll, as it was on a private property.

The official toll period began on December the 22nd, and runs until January the third.

Nineteen people died on New Zealand's roads over the Christmas holiday period last year, the highest holiday road toll in four years.

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